What better time to talk about the worst mistakes a PR practitioner can make than the scariest time of the year? Avoid a fright at work by avoiding these mistakes!
- Not Having a Clear Purpose
First and foremost, your content must have a purpose. Or what is the point? How will your audience interact with your mission if it does not understand? Without a clear and defined purpose, your brand will lack direction. And a brand without a defined direction is in for a scary ride.
- Missing the Right Time
Imagine you are telling a joke. One of the most vital parts of the joke is landing the punchline. If you mess up the timing of your joke, then it fails. The same goes for public relations. Sharing a press release or sending out a media advisory all relies on timing. If you send it out too early, you risk the journalist forgetting your story by the time it needs to be shared. If you send it out too late, you risk missing your deadline.
- BAD WRITING
Perhaps one of the worst mistakes you can make in public relations is poor writing! Avoid it at all costs. Writing is the backbone of PR. Correct grammar and punctuation are some of the first things you learn when you start studying public relations. Bad writing looks unprofessional. It is one of the easiest mistakes to make but also the easiest to fix!
- Ignoring Social Media
If you are not up to date with social media, you are behind the times. Social media controls our lives, from how we receive news to how we share it. Goodbye, newspapers and magazines. Hello, Twitter and Facebook and Instagram! Social media is the easiest and fastest way to share information. Ignoring it could be costly!
- Avoiding Negative Press
There is a reason crisis communication exists! One of the worst mistakes you can make during a crisis is staying silent! Silence will only raise additional concerns among your stakeholders. A crisis can happen to anyone at any time, so always make sure you have a plan in place to react swiftly and accordingly.
- Focusing on Everyone
An important part of public relations is identifying your target audience. Once you understand your target audience, you will have developed more successful communication channels and messages. A message that is too broad will most likely miss its audience, so always focus on a selected group for the most success.
- Automated Media Pitches
You know that underwhelming feeling you get when someone gives you a present you do not like? But when you open a gift that is perfect for you, it feels great. People want to feel special. The same thing goes for media pitches. A generic media pitch sent out to too many journalists is easy to spot and won’t get you very far. Instead, find a journalist that specializes in your field and make a connection with them. When pitching a story, customize it to match the journalist’s style. A media pitch persuades a particular journalist to cover your story, so make sure it’s a story they can see themselves writing!